Glenn Miller Army Air Force Band* ‎– Marvelous Miller Moods




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December 11, 2016
referencing Marvelous Miller Moods, LP, Album, LPM-1494
All 11 of these tracks were included on the 5-LP set of Miller's Army Air Force Band that RCA Victor released just two years before this single LP selection appeared. As that was such a large set, and expensive option, perhaps RCA was thinking this would help stimulate sales of its predecessor, or at least make some of the material more accessible to Miller's huge postwar fan base. The ideal selection of AAF Band recordings, however, would not surface until 1996's "The Secret Broadcasts," in far better sound than either offering and with a better selection as well. This 'marvelous' selection emphasizes a more subdued Miller manner -- there are no exhuberant flagwavers here, though "Farewell Blues" gets a highly interesting and colorful treatment in comparison to the more rollicking Civilian Band version. "Pears on Velvet," written by and featuring pianist Mel Powell, is a showstopper and makes this worth owning if you don't have it any other way; "Holiday for Strings" is a decent listen at least once, though it isn't the sort of thing one usually turns to Glenn Miller for. However, this selection is dominated by "The Creamer" i.e. singer Johnny Desmond; either you love him or the cream curdles, and for this listener the clouds in my coffee grow fatty with distaste. Focusing on Johnny in '57 would have made a lot of sense, as he was doing a lot of television then and far better known than when these recordings were made with Miller. Ultimately it's up to the listener to determine if this constitutes an acceptable range of 'moods' or is merely 'Marvelous Miller Mush'.